Zach DeBell is a name many schools were already familiar with, and now even more schools are familiar with him after his spring break tour of seven schools. He talked with GoJackets.com about this trip and here is what he had to say about each school that he visited:
Miami - "I was there for their spring game on Saturday (March 27th). It was a lot of fun. I really enjoyed it. I actually saw Warren Sapp there. That was kind of cool. I saw a lot of fans there, so that was good. I just sat back and watched the game and enjoyed it. The players there played with a lot of tenacity.
Georgia Tech - I was there last Monday (March 29th). I really enjoyed Georgia Tech. I met Coach Paul Johnson. He and my dad played at rival high schools in a small town in North Carolina. Coach and my dad were joking around, my dad recalled them tying one game during one season. Coach Johnson laughed and said, 'Yeah, I remember having to run some laps for that one.' But, while there, I got to tour the facilities. I saw the locker room and even got to go into the equipment room and see all four of the jerseys they have. I was able to watch them practice, that was good. I met (O-line) Coach Sewak and (defensive backs) Coach Kelly. I think Coach Sewak liked me a lot. Some of the players were going out of their way to say something to me, and I thought that was really cool."
Georgia - "It really wasn't that long of a visit. I was there for an hour and a half, tops. I talked with (O-line) Coach Stacy (Searles) and gave him my film. I saw the trophy room there, and that was pretty cool."
Clemson - "Clemson was nice. It was pretty cool because when I walked up I could see how big their stadium was. I met with the coaches. They had sent me numerous written letters. The coaches, though, were in a meeting when I got there. When they got out of the meeting, each coach came up to me and shook my hand. I got to touch the rock (Howard's Rock) and run down the hill in the stadium. I was able to talk with Coach (Dabo) Swinney for a while. He was telling me how he's made a difference since he's been there and said that I can make a difference."
South Carolina - "I saw Coach Shawn Elliott. I met some of the players there, and I watched practice. I watched Coach Elliott coach (the offensive line). He's really funny and intense. I met one of the players, Owen Matthews. He was really cool. Unfortunately, I didn't get to meet Coach Steve Spurrier on this trip. One thing that stood out about South Carolina was the fans. I was surprised at their fans who would drive up to practice far away and they'd stand on their cars with binoculars and telescopes just to try to watch practice. I toured their facilities with Coach Mangus after practice and was able to tour the town a little bit, too. It was fun."
North Carolina - "North Carolina was really nice. I really liked the scenery. The back roads are beautiful. I toured their facilities and campus on a golf cart. Coach Douglass and Coach Withers are there, and my mom knew them back in college. I met the O-line coach and gave him my film."
After the UNC visit, Zach mentioned that he received an important phone call. "After UNC, I had a message to call Coach Kelly at Georgia Tech. When I called him back, he told me that Coach Johnson wanted to speak with me. He handed him the phone and Coach Johnson said that 'we liked your film and we want to offer you a scholarship. Man, all I could say was 'Thank you coach!' I was just grinning ear to ear!"
On his way back home, DeBell then stopped at Central Florida for their Junior Day. "I went to their junior day," he said. "I saw some of the coaches. Coach (George) Godsey toured me around. He's a really great guy. I got to stand on the field and watch the practice in front of the yellow line where all the other recruits and their families had to stand behind. That was really cool and made me feel good. I saw the dorms, some were messy, but I liked them. My uncle actually played at UCF. He was a center who went on to play in the NFL with the Rams and the Cardinals."
Currently, Zach holds nine offers from Minnesota, Central Florida, FIU, Iowa State, South Carolina, Clemson, South Florida, Georgia Tech, and Western Kentucky. He is receiving interest from Miami, North Carolina, and Georgia among many others. He currently doesn't have a top list but mentioned that he may make one soon. He has no timetable and is just taking everything in for right now.